Screen Readers Skip to Content

Deaflympics: International Games for the Deaf

Updated/Revised Date: 2022-04-10

Synopsis: Information on the Deaflympics, the International Games competition for the Deaf sanctioned by the International Olympic Committee. Unlike other games for athletes with disabilities, which are all directed by non-disabled officials, the Deaflympics are run by deaf people for deaf athletes. To qualify for the games, athletes must have a hearing loss of at least 55 decibels in their "better ear". Hearing aids, cochlear implants and the like are not allowed to be used in competition, to place all athletes on the same level.

advertisements

Main Document

What are the Deaflympics?

The Deaflympics (previously called World Games for the Deaf, and International Games for the Deaf) are an International Olympic Committee (IOC)-sanctioned event at which deaf athletes compete at an elite level. However, unlike the athletes in other IOC-sanctioned events (i.e., the Olympics, the Paralympics, and the Special Olympics), the Deaflympians cannot be guided by sounds (i.e., the starter's guns, bullhorn commands or referee whistles). The games have been organized by the Comite International des Sports des Sourds (CISS, "The International Committee of Sports for the Deaf") since the first event.

Deaflympics Publications (14)

The Deaflympics are held every 4 years. To date, the Deaflympics have been hosted by 36 cities in 21 countries, but by cities outside Europe on only five occasions (Washington D.C. 1965, Los Angeles 1985, Christchurch 1989, Melbourne 2005 and Taipei 2009). The last summer games were held in Sofia, Bulgaria in 2013, and the next scheduled winter games will be in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia in 2015.

Formal international competition in deaf sport began with the 1924 Paris Silent Games, organized by the Comite International des Sports des Sourds, CISS (The International Committee of Sports for the Deaf). These games evolved into the modern Deaflympics, governed by the CISS. The CISS maintains separate games for deaf athletes based on their numbers, their special communication needs on the sports field, and the social interaction that is a vital part of sports.

Deaflympics Logo
Deaflympics Logo

The games are built on 80 years of tradition. Organized since 1924 by the Comite International des Sports des Sourds, CISS (The International Committee of Sports for the Deaf), the first Summer Deaflympics were held in Paris. Winter Deaflympics were added in 1949. The Summer and Winter Deaflympics are sanctioned by the International Olympic Committee, IOC.

To qualify for the games, athletes must have a hearing loss of at least 55 decibels in their "better ear". Hearing aids, cochlear implants and the like are not allowed to be used in competition, to place all athletes on the same level.

Year and Locations of WINTER Deaflympics
Year Host
1949 Seefeld, Austria
1953 Oslo, Norway
1955 Oberammergau, West Germany
1959 Montana-Vermala, Switzerland
1963 Åre, Sweden
1967 Berchtesgaden, West Germany
1971 Adelboden, Switzerland
1975 Lake Placid, United States
1979 Méribel, France
1983 Madonna di Campiglio, Italy
1987 Oslo, Norway
1991 Banff, Canada
1995 Ylläs, Finland
1999 Davos, Switzerland
2003 Sundsvall, Sweden
2007 Salt Lake City, United States
2011 Vysoké Tatry, Slovakia
2015 Khanty-Mansiysk and Magnitogorsk, Russia
2019 Sondrio Province, Italy
2023 Quebec City, Canada
2027 ----
Year and Locations of SUMMER Deaflympics
Year Host
1924 Paris, France
1928 Amsterdam, Netherlands
1931 Nuremberg, Germany
1935 London, Great Britain
1939 Stockholm, Sweden
1949 Copenhagen, Denmark
1953 Brussels, Belgium
1957 Milan, Italy
1961 Helsinki, Finland
1965 Washington, D.C., United States
1969 Belgrade, Yugoslavia
1973 Malmö, Sweden
1977 Bucharest, Romania
1981 Cologne, West Germany
1985 Los Angeles, United States
1989 Christchurch, New Zealand
1993 Sofia, Bulgaria
1997 Copenhagen, Denmark
2001 Rome, Italy
2005 Melbourne, Australia
2009 Taipei, Chinese Taipei
2013 Sofia, Bulgaria
2017 Samsun, Turkey
2022 Caxias do Sul, Brazil
Summer and Winter Deaflympics Programs
Summer Deaflympics Sports
Athletics
Badminton
Basketball
Beach Volleyball
Bowling
Cycling Road
Football
Handball
Judo
Karate
Orienteering
Shooting
Swimming
Table Tennis
Taekwondo
Tennis
Volleyball
Water Polo
Wrestling Freestyle
Wrestling Greco-Roman
Winter Deaflympics Sports
Alpine Skiing
Cross Country Skiing
Curling
Ice Hockey
Snowboard

During the countdown for the 2009 Taipei event, Jackie Chan, (actor), sung the 2009 Deaflympics theme song "Power in Me" and told the crowd about an accident in Yugoslavia which left him with decreased hearing in one ear. He encouraged everyone to keep trying their best and never to give up to succeed.

Post to Twitter Add to Facebook

Subtopics and Associated Subjects

Disabled World is an independent disability community founded in 2004 to provide disability news and information to people with disabilities, seniors, their family and/or carers. See our homepage for informative reviews, exclusive stories and how-tos. You can connect with us on social media such as Twitter and Facebook or learn more about Disabled World on our about us page.

advertisements

Disabled World provides general information only. The materials presented are never meant to substitute for professional medical care by a qualified practitioner, nor should they be construed as such. Financial support is derived from advertisements or referral programs, where indicated. Any 3rd party offering or advertising does not constitute an endorsement.


Cite This Page (APA): Disabled World. (2022, April 10). Deaflympics: International Games for the Deaf. Disabled World. Retrieved July 4, 2022 from www.disabled-world.com/sports/deaflympics/

Permalink: <a href="https://www.disabled-world.com/sports/deaflympics/">Deaflympics</a>